06 October 2010

Peak Leak

Excerpt from the New Scientist, 7 September 2010

'Thousands of ships sunk in the second world war are seeping oil – and with their rusty tanks disintegrating, "peak leak" is only a few years away..

There may be huge uncertainties about exactly how much oil is out there, but no one doubts that it dwarfs any single previous maritime spill. Etkin and Trevor Gilbert put the figure at somewhere between 2.5 million tonnes and 20 million tonnes. Even the lower estimate is more than double the amount of oil thought to have been spilled into the Gulf of Mexico by the Deepwater Horizon accident and more than 60 times that of the Exxon Valdez (see diagram)...'